A new year starts with the hope and promise of new beginnings, journeys yet to be taken, and changes on the horizon. In the hope of fulfilling that promise each year, we are inspired to look for New Year’s resolutions. We set goals about losing weight, eating healthier, exercising, spending more time with family and friends, and more; the list is endless.
However, when looking to make New Year’s resolutions we need to look no further than the corporal works of mercy. It is in caring for others and seeing Christ in all we encounter that we achieve our highest goal, being our best selves and serving God.
If we reflect on our baptismal promise, our resolutions come easily and without effort; they are the witness of a holy life and practical charity. When we live a holy life, we live in accordance with Christ and his teachings. We seek to be closer to Jesus not just in word but in prayer, and deed. We offer comfort, we show kindness, we serve others and we extend hope.
And what of practical charity? Pope Francis tells us that, “On the one hand, it is to look at others through the eyes of Jesus himself and, on the other hand, to see Jesus in the face of the poor.” Practical charity then encompasses everything from the smile we give a stranger walking down the street to the donations we give to philanthropic organizations.
With the promises of a New Year on the horizon, we asked members of our CFGP team to share what they had in store for 2022. This is what we heard:
“What I am most thankful for is my family, and that I am able to continue my mission of giving and helping the homeless. This has been my passion for many years now. I thank God for blessing me so that I can bless others.” — Shealene Sullivan, Data Entry Clerk
“My New Year’s resolutions are to work out, eat heathy foods and use the time I would otherwise spend endlessly scrolling social media on prayer and reflection. I am so thankful to God for my family, friends, and the strong Catholic community that surrounds me.” — William Rickards, Senior Project Coordinator
“In the New Year, I remain grateful for the strong sense of Catholic community in our beloved Philadelphia area. I am looking forward to a year of growth and am resolved to make deeper ties to my immediate communities.” – Justine Dougherty, Manager, Partner Development
This year when we are thinking about our resolutions, yes, let’s eat healthier, exercise more and spend more time with family and friends. But let’s also trust that divine spark within us that prompts us to breathe into our baptismal vows.
Let’s be kind and take time to think about our neighbors. Let’s make charitable contributions both monetarily and with our time and abilities. Let’s resolve to live more truly and fully the teachings of the gospels and shine with the light of Christ that is found in all of us.
Wishing you a blessed and healthy New Year!
Sarah Hanley is the president and CEO of the Catholic Foundation of Greater Philadelphia.
Join the CatholicPhilly.com family
CatholicPhilly.com works to strengthen the connections between people, families and communities every day by delivering the news people need to know about the Catholic Church, especially in the Philadelphia region, and the world in which we live.
By your donation in any amount, you and hundreds of other people become part of our mission to inform, form in the Catholic faith and inspire the thousands of readers who visit every month.
Here is how you can help:
- A $100 gift allows us to present award-winning photos of Catholic life in our neighborhoods.
- A $50 gift enables us to cover a news event in a local parish, school or Catholic institution.
- A $20 gift lets us obtain solid faith formation resources that can deepen your spirituality and knowledge of the faith.
- A small, automated monthly donation means you can support us continually and easily.
Won't you consider making a gift today?
Please join in the church's vital mission of communications by offering a gift in whatever amount that you can ― a single gift of $40, $50, $100, or more, or a monthly donation. Your gift will strengthen the fabric of our entire Catholic community and sustain CatholicPhilly.com as your trusted news source. Thank you in advance!
Make your donation by credit card here:
Or make your donation by check:
222 N. 17th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103
Share this story